Tech Beat: Kairos Society honors forward-thinking inventors
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Adults don't have the answers to all of the world's most pressing problems, so now college students are giving it a try. The Kairos Society has gathered some of the country's smartest and most innovative students.
"We brought 350 of these top students, along with 150 of today's most influential leaders," Kairos Society spokesperson Ankur Jain said. "Let's break down these big problems in education and health care into specific problems with these kinds of students, who are coming from artificial intelligence backgrounds, science backgrounds. We can now create new innovative ideas on how to solve these problems and then turn those into companies."
The organization also scoured the world to create a "Kairos 50," what it calls a "Fortune 500-type list" but for companies created by college students to help solve a global problem. The innovations range from new ways to watch television to a way to wash one's hands without soap.
The waterless soap was devised by Headboy Industries' Ludwick Marishane, a student at the University of Cape Town in South Africa. It’s unlike hand sanitizer because it uses moisturizers and has no alcohol, among other things.
"You've got two billion people in the world who don't have proper access to water and sanitation. This is a product that saves many lives and it's very effective against a disease called trachoma, which leaves eight million people permanently blind each and every year," Marishane said. "To avoid trachoma, you don't need drugs or medicine; you just need to wash your face."
Two companies came out of the University of Southern California. One product, Sole Bicycles, is inexpensive and made of recycled steel. The bicycles help people travel in a more environmentally friendly and healthier way. The other product, American Standard Television, is making a TV box so you can access more media from other countries.
"You have a lot of people trying to access this media through piracy because it's the only means to get it. Piracy has shown in a lot of ways it fuels black market corruption, so we give these people access to all their culture, all their media," American Standard Television spokesperson Jonas Jonsson said.
For more information on the students and their companies visit www.KairosSociety.org.